A man who derives lots of talk from the kop and football fans alike is the much debated Dirk Kuyt. Some say legend, some say workhorse. I would like to look into what truly defines the status legend, which in my opinion is banded about far too often from many clubs fans in the modern football era and whether Dirk Kuyt fits the bill.
A club legend to me is someone who gives everything for the club, connects with the fans of all clubs not just his own, helps the club win trophies/does a lot to keep the club going forward, have a vast appearance record, excite people and above all else would be someone in the future who you know that when people think of a club at that time in history, are mentioned a lot.
In Holland Dirk was prolific before moving to Liverpool with a goal scoring record of 149 goals in 306 matches (a record of nearly 1 in every two games) which by anybody’s standards is top rate and much was expected from him. An impressive debut at home at Anfield against West Ham Utd whetted the appetite. He ended his first season with a reasonable goal tally of 14 in 48 (roughly 1 goal every 3 games).
After his relative initial season success much was expected in the season after, with fans allowing every player a season to settle in.
However he found the pace and quality of premier league defenders too much to continue his previous scoring ratio, after being tried on the wing due to his work rate and quality link up play he has managed in his five tallied seasons so far just 66 goals in 241 appearances. Although he can also be credited with vital assists and forming good relationships with Torres, Suarez and Gerrard amongst others.
Scoring in a lot of major fixtures for the reds over his 5 year Liverpool career, he definitely is the man for the big occasion. Dirk is obviously highly valued by his peers and the club itself, regularly being involved in marketing campaigns and the promotion videos on the clubs television station (LFC TV).
- Scoring in Manchester and Merseyside derbies, including a brace and a hat-trick.
- Scoring in important European games on the way to and actually in the Athens 2007 Champions League final itself, netting in Champions League qualification and knockout matches afterwards.
- Most recently important Europa League goals.
- Goals in the last minute of Premier League games including against Arsenal, Bolton and Wigan respectively.
Based on the above surely this would mean ‘deadly Dirk’ having more positive feedback in people’s debates and conversations than the usual ‘He’s rubbish! He’s great! He’s alright!’
Personally I find myself going through phases of support with the man from the Netherlands, sometimes raving about his attitude and ability to pop up the right place at the right time, but not backing him when he is not performing, whereas usually with players who have given so much to the clubs success you find yourself being biased and giving them the benefit of the doubt. I feel if he was more consistent in the lesser games then he would be more worthy of legendary status.
Dirk Kuyt is stuck somewhere between being player that will be remembered fondly and a player who will be regarded as a legend. In simple terms, he hasn’t done enough yet to be worthy of the term legend.
But if Liverpool Football Club does win the league title in the coming seasons and Dirk Kuyt scores important goals along the way, making lots of appearances, he would then have to be seriously considered!
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